• I don’t care that Tony Hayward went yachting over the weekend because, for crying out loud, he’s a rich asshole and that’s what rich assholes do: they go yachting. Though, just as an aside, I am amused that his boat is named “Bob.”
• I don’t care that some Swede said he cared about “the little people” when he obviously meant to say he cared about “the little guy.” He’s not a native English speaker and it’s not the first time a foreigner mangled an American euphemism. The whining and moaning about that one made us all look like assholes, and the last thing we needed was for the establishment media to join in the fray, pointing their fingers and laughing. People can snicker about this stuff all they want but that doesn’t mean the New York Times, Washington Post, Chicago Tribune, CBS News, etc. need to blast it all over the place.
• I don’t care that Sarah Palin told people to pray for God to stop the oil spill. President Obama basically said the same thing in his Oval Office speech last week. Frankly, if someone wants to pray for some Divine Intervention over this disaster, where’s the harm? While you’re at it, light some incense, say a chant, visualize a pink bubble, sacrifice a goat, howl at the moon, or do whatever it is your particular belief system dictates. I think it’s pretty obvious that we need all the help we can get at this point.
Now that we have that cleared up, here’s what I do care about. I care that our discourse is so unbelievably stupid in this country. I care that we keep focusing on the trivial shit instead of trying to figure out how to solve our problems. I don’t happen to think there’s a national obsession with politics but our pundits apparently do. Yes that's their job but lately they seem to have gone off the deep end and anyway, as Adam Nagourney pointed out over the weekend, we're all pundits now. Maybe instead of spending so much time worrying about the political process we should be worrying a little more about what policies are needed.
Today John Cole writes:
Can you imagine going through life with all this artificial nonsense dictating your decision making process? I like those shoes, but do they make me look “weak?” I really would like some spicy mustard on my sandwich, but is it too “elitist?” My employee is a mouthy little shit who gets the job done, but do I have to fire him to show I am “tough” even if doing so hurts my business? Sure, I’d like to go to the opera, but will that make me look like a pussy?
He’s writing about all of the McChrystal nonsense, and the growing meme that Obama has to fire McChrystal not because of anything related to the mission in Afghanistan but for political reasons: that not firing him “says something” -- to whom, I’m not sure. I guess to the pundits who increasingly feel like they were the ones elected. Hey guess what, Chris Matthews: I know there are some Republicans who send a shiver down your leg at the mere thought of them running for president in 2012 but for crying out loud that's two years away and in the meantime there's some actual governing that people are trying to do.
We have some serious stuff to work on, people. We need to figure out how we’re going to get off the oil tit, how we’re going to put people back to work, how we’re going to extract ourselves from the stupid, expensive wars the last Administration committed us to.
The endless yammering over superficialities is not helpful or productive.